Torontonians will take every possible opportunity to celebrate the summer…and we don’t blame them because it always seems to fly by in the blink of an eye. Another thing they love to celebrate is food. Glorious food. Merge the 2 together and you’ve got an abundance of summer food festivals that take place all over the GTA and celebrate the diversity of this city’s culinary scene. How do you know which ones are worth your time and money? We’ve done the thinking for you and put together this list of the July food festivals worth checking out.
When: July 1st
Where: Centennial Park
What better way to spend your Canada Day holiday than covered in sticky-sweet, finger-licking good barbecue sauce? July 1st is the final day of the Toronto Ribfest and is sure to be one of the busiest of the festivals 5 day run. At Ribfest you’ll find musical performances, a kids zone for the young ones, Canada Day fireworks after dark and of course and endless supply of sweet sweet ribs.
Taste of Toronto
When: July 2-5
Where: Fort York
The Taste of Toronto is back for its second year at historic Fort York and will showcase world class chefs and the best of Toronto restaurants along with over 70 vendors during this 4 day festival of food. Among the many superstar chefs attending this festival are Masaharu Morimoto, Mark McEwan, Massimo Capra and Jonathan Waxman. If you hurry, you can even score discount tickets through Groupon.
Taste of Lawrence
When: July 3-5
Where: Lawrence Ave E, Scarborough
Forget Taste of the Danforth, head to Scarborough for one of the best 3 day food festivals in the GTA. Taste of Lawrence has been quietly gaining popularity for 12 years now in the Wexford Heights BIA community. The festival shuts down Lawrence Ave E between Warden and Birchmount and offers foodies free admission and access to over 130 international street vendors.
When: July 3-26
Where: Various Restaurants, GTA
For many Toronto foodies, the month of July means one thing: Summerlicious. For 3 weeks each July, many of Toronto’s best restaurants participate in this summer food festival that makes high end cuisine accessible. Participating restaurants offer 3-course prix fixe lunch and dinner menus all at exceptional prices. A great way to test out a new restaurant or try a high end one for less.
Summer Craft Beer Fest
When: July 9
Where: Liberty Village
If you’re a lover of craft beer, you’ll want to schedule this 1-day festival into your calendar. On Thursday July 9th from 5pm-10pm, Liberty Village will gather together some of the biggest craft beer-minded folks around to celebrate the 3rd year of this festival. We recommend arriving early because if past years are any indication, this will be a busy one!
TO Food Fest
When: July 12
Where: Chinese Cultural Centre of Greater Toronto
Entering its 4th year, the TO Food Fest showcases some of the best reviewed restaurants and hidden gems of the GTA. The one day festival happens on Sunday July 12th from 1pm-6pm and in case you’re wondering, this isn’t just Chinese food. the 2015 festival will feature poutine, cannoli, Hawaiian barbecue, spiral potatoes and more.
Toronto’s Festival of Beer
When: July 24-26
Where: Bandshell Park, Exhibition Place
The Toronto Festival of Beer is THE summer event for beer lovers. The bad news is that Saturday tickets are sold out, but don’t fret! Friday and Sunday tickets are still available! In addition to over 90 breweries there’s also some delicious food choices like grilled cheese, poutine, tiny donuts and barbecue to soak up those suds. Even more, this years musical acts include Naughty by Nature, 54-40 and Lowest of the Low.
Night It Up!
When: July 24-26
Where: Markham Civic Centre
Night It Up! presented by TD bank brings the culture of night markets and Asian street foods to the GTA in this 3 day (or night) festival. Head to Markham if you love the sights and smells of sizzling meat on a stick, spicy stir frys and delicious sweet treats. All of which this festival has become very well known for.